The Self-Discovery Process

Multiple Models, Seamless Integration, Competitive Advantage

The Self-Discovery Process is an experiential exploration and integration of three separate personality models. The models can be used together or introduced independently and integrated seamlessly. This process providers practitioners with a competitive advantage over other professionals that may use multiple instruments based on different theoretical bases that do not connect. Each model of The Self-Discovery Process has wide-ranging business applications such as career development, change and transition management, sales, conflict, communication, stress…etc.

Temperament Theory
Temperament Theory explains the reasons for behavior and sources of deep psychological stress. Temperament patterns demonstrate individuals’ core needs and values as well as the talents they are more drawn to develop.

Interaction Styles
Similar to popular social styles models and DISC, Interaction Styles is based on observable behavioral patterns. Interaction Styles helps to predict how an individual will interact in a given situation and locate sources of interpersonal conflict.

Cognitive Dynamics
Cognitive Dynamics is based in the Jungian theory from which the Myers-Briggs Type Indicator® instrument is derived. Each of the sixteen type patterns has a distinct pattern of cognitive process and development. Knowing an individual’s innate tendency to use these processes can help release creative blocks and generate more effective communication.

What is it?
The Self-Discovery Process is the method of helping individuals discover their best-fit personality pattern. It can be used with and without the help of self-report instruments such as the MBTI instrument. We like to give people as many data points as possible to find their best-fit type pattern, so we frequently use an instrument in conjunction with the exploratory process. The Self-Discovery Process is used with the three different psychological models: Temperament theory, Interaction Styles, and Cognitive Dynamics. Each model can be explored independently as a stand-alone model and then later integrated with other models as appropriate.

  • Safety
    Key to The Self-Discovery Process is giving people a mind set that has them open to “trying on” the different patterns, so we engage in a series of explanations and experiences that set a safe environment for exploration. Safety is felt when the following conditions are met and established from the first contact:

    • Confidentiality is ensured
    • Participation is voluntary
    • People feel like they have “wiggle room” and are not being “type cast,” labeled, pigeonholed, or put in a box
    • People understand that they have the final say on which pattern is the best fit

    We also maintain a safe environment throughout the session by focusing on positive aspects of the patterns. We want people to find the different patterns equally positive in terms of contributions. When a negative characteristic is portrayed about one pattern, a parallel negative is portrayed about the others as well.
    People are not given instrument results until they’ve had an opportunity to get a snapshot understanding of the patterns being portrayed—often through graphics, descriptors, cartoon, and real-life examples. We also give them opportunities to interact with others of similar leanings in small groups. The same effect is achieved with individuals by giving them first person descriptions and interacting with them around examples from their own lives that they can check out. Key to this participation is a variety of methods, providing reading resources of each of the patterns, and time for the self-reflection necessary to do the reading. We recognize that different methods work for different people, so we offer a variety of ways to get at the information.

    The Steps

    1. Set-Up
    2. Presentation of essential qualities to generate some hypotheses of some best-fit patterns
    3. Interactive experience/activity of some kind
    4. Debrief of activity to clarify misconceptions
    5. Feedback indicated by instrument results
    6. Reading of Self-Discovery Descriptions as an assessment method (when possible)
    7. Continued dialog and clarifying, often offering other descriptions to read
    8. Encouraging further exploration as needed

What was it designed for?
The Self-Discovery Process was developed out of a realization that many people were accepting instrument results as being the “truth” for them without actively engaging in self-assessment. We realized that this could be detrimental to the results we were trying to achieve. We wanted a way to truly engage people in coming to know themselves so they got a more accurate result. If people are “mistyped” then an inaccurate type pattern often becomes the story the people tell themselves about who they are. They may make inappropriate decisions based on this false picture. Worse, they miss the powerful gift of gaining insights into who they really are. In a work group or a relationship, having an inaccurate picture of someone else can lead to failed attempts to try to improve communication by using different language and yet not really getting through.
What are the benefits?

  • Builds self-awareness and teaches skills that are adaptable to any level of the organization.
  • Gets more buy-in and ownership of personality diversity information. If people are invested in the process, they are more likely to apply the new knowledge after the session.
  • Increased self-leadership. It encourages taking responsibility for one’s own behaviors as well as for getting psychological needs and drives met.